By July 23, 2020News

ROCKVILLE, Md. — In the critical race for a COVID-19 vaccine, the United States has its eyes squarely set on Montgomery County, Maryland. In addition to being the home of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), over $3 Billion of public and private coronavirus vaccine research and manufacturing funding has been invested over the past four months in local Montgomery County life sciences companies, including Novavax, Inc. and Emergent BioSolutions. These large-scale investments continue the County’s rich history as the epicenter of many of healthcare’s greatest achievements, including the location where the human genome was first sequenced.

Gaithersburg’s Novavax was awarded $1.6 Billion, one of the largest Operation Warp Speed federal funding awards to date, for its late stage coronavirus vaccine development. This government funding is intended to complete late-stage clinical development, including a pivotal Phase 3 clinical trial, as well as establish large-scale manufacturing and deliver 100 million doses of NVX-CoV2373, Novavax’ COVID-19 vaccine candidate, as early as late 2020. Novavax has also received $388 Million in funding from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and $60 Million through a Department of Defense Contract to fund the development of NVX-CoV2373.

“The Covid-19 pandemic highlights the need for industry, government and funding entities to join forces to defeat this and other public health threats. We feel fortunate to be in resource-rich Montgomery County as we continue the important work of developing a vaccine to defeat Covid-19 and other serious threats to public health,” said Stanley C. Erck, President and Chief Executive Officer of Novavax.

Montgomery County’s Emergent BioSolutions has also been an Operation Warp Speed recipient, securing $628 Million for manufacturing capability for vaccines. Emergent has two COVID-19 agreements totaling $615 Million to manufacture drug substances for Johnson & Johnson’s lead vaccine candidate, as well as partnerships with Novavax, AstraZeneca and Vaxart to develop and manufacture their vaccine candidates. Leading biotech companies in the U.S. and around the world are recognizing and utilizing Emergent BioSolutions’ incredible ability to rapidly scale up and produce vaccines for global pandemics.

“Montgomery County, Maryland truly is the nation’s vaccine capital. Our biotech companies are a major force in fighting this pandemic,” said Benjamin H. Wu, the Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) President and CEO. “The County and the world can benefit from our local talent and ingenuity. We are leading the way to help save lives with our unparalleled vaccine research and manufacturing capabilities.”

In addition to Novavax and Emergent BioSolutions, there are close to 40 companies helping to fight the pandemic in Montgomery County, including GlaxoSmithKline, Sanaria and Zalgen Labs, among others. See more local Montgomery County COVID-19 contributions here.

“Montgomery County is at the epicenter of global healthcare. Three of the top federal agencies are nearby, including the world’s largest researcher (NIH), regulator (FDA) and payor (CMS). The County has an abundant and incredibly diverse workforce providing access to 40,000 life science workers,” said Brad Stewart, MCEDC’s SVP of Business Development. “You’ll also find 20% of the world’s top vaccine development influencers right here in Maryland. There’s no better place to be for vaccine development.”


The Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) is the official public-private economic development organization representing Montgomery County, Maryland. Created in 2016, MCEDC is led by a Board of Directors of business executives. Its mission is to help businesses start, grow and relocate in Montgomery County by helping them gain access to top talent, business and market intelligence and prime locations. For more information, visit our website. Follow us on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.

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